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What Are Essential Oils?

A box of oils and a reference book: that’s all it took to change my healthcare forever. Around 80% of my health concerns are now addressed with essential oils. The box is my medicine cabinet, my cleaning product cabinet and my skin care cabinet all in one. Read on to find out why these oils are so powerful and versatile.

Whenever you smell a beautiful flower or a herb, you are experiencing first-hand the plant’s essential oil – the scent of the oil is the essence of the plant.

Essential oils are volatile compounds that are found in every plant – in the seed, flower, stem, bark, root, etc. – which are extracted, mainly through steam distillation.

Essential oils are the essence of the plant – the life force that keeps the plant safe from predators and infections, that attracts friendly insects, and keeps the plant thriving. Essential oils are basically the immune system of the plant.

And when we use essential oils, we are offering all of these incredible properties to our own bodies. This is what makes them so powerful; in fact, they’re over 50 to 70 times more powerful than herbal extracts.

 
 
 
 

How come the oils are so potent and effective for our body & mind?

As the name implies, it is an 'oil' and therefore fat soluble. Due to the membrane of our cells also being made out of fat, or lipid, the essential oil can easily penetrate the cell membrane, enter the cells and provide benefits to the cell directly. Not many other substances on the planet can do this, by the way.

The other unique feature of essential oils is their small structural molecular size. Recent research has demonstrated that certain constituents of essential oils are able to pass one of the most secure tissue barriers in the body- the blood-brain barrier. Unfortunately, toxins and harmful substances can access the brain through this barrier as their molecules are also smaller. Using essential oils, can therefore assist in reversing the affects from toxic build up.

Intuitively, and throughout historical reference, we know about the healing power of some plants. For example, we know that Lavender is calming and helps with sleep. We know that Tea Tree oil is a good antiseptic and helps ease itchy bites. We know that Lemon is a great cleanser of our cells.

But there is so much more to know about the ancient wisdom of these plant essences. Did you know that Frankincense can be applied to wrinkles and problematic skin, Vetiver is the best oil for calming an anxious or sleepless mind, and Oregano can assist with getting rid of parasites in the gut?

The sky is the limit! These versatile oils can be used for almost everything!


Essential oils can be used in 3 ways

Aromatically – putting the oils in a diffuser or smelling them directly

Topically – rubbing the oil into the skin or sore muscles

Internally – taking the oils in food or as supplements

A note about ingesting essential oils:

“When ingested, essential oils directly enter the blood stream via the gastrointestinal tract, where they are transported throughout the rest of the body. Essential oils are lipid soluble so they are readily transported to all organs of the body, including the brain. Then, like all things we consume, essential oils are metabolised by the liver and other organs and are then excreted.

The composition of essential oils is highly complex. Each constituent possesses a unique set of biochemical properties that react with cells and organs in different ways. Although these mechanisms of action are not completely understood, the positive end results have been demonstrated. However, the body is only equipped to handle appropriate doses of essential oils.”

So when taking EO’s internally, ensure the HIGHEST quality and always consult with a healthcare professional about the appropriate dosage. Remember, the oils are highly concentrated and 1 drop goes a long way.


My favourite ways of having the essential oils part of my daily life

Whether it’s in a food recipe, non-toxic skincare or room refresher, essential oils can make a difference to your daily life rituals.

  • Add Lemon, Lime or Orange oil to water for daily detoxification

  • Replace toxic household cleaners with DIY surface sprays, disinfectants, and room refresheners

  • Calm anxiety and help with sleep with Vetiver, Clary Sage and Lavender

  • Soothe muscle aches and pains with Wintergreen, Lemongrass and Copaiba

  • Support the immune system with Oregano, detoxification blends including Grapefruit, Cilantro, Juniper Berry and immune supporting blends including Orange, Clove, Eucalyptus and more

  • Make safe, non-toxic skincare and perfumes with Frankincense, Copaiba, Turmeric, Manuka and Ylang Ylang

  • Flavour foods naturally with Wild Orange, Cinnamon, Cardamom and Peppermint – check out my recipe section for ideas


 
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Recipes with Essential Oils

Essential Oils are not just nice smelly things (although they are that too!) but as you have discovered here, they are powerful plant extracts which can be added not just to your diffusers but also in order to supercharge your skin care, household cleaners, food and so much more.

Create your own nourishing customised face oil, lip balm, body lotion and hair tonics. Detoxify your household cleaning cabinet by making your own surface spray, shower cleaner and room freshener- choosing your favourite oils, making your house smell incredible. And add more depth of flavour to your food, receiving extra nourishment and healing through combining oils with your favourite recipes.


 


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